O little town of

Second ekphrastic poem written for the painting by M. Rackham Barnes

Screen Shot 2019-11-15 at 16.02.07

O little town of blah blah blah

how still you lie

beneath this sky

where stars look down

and sternly frown

on ghosts that walk

with loping stalk

down every street

but never meet

a living soul

in this dead hole.


O starry sky I wonder why

we don’t just die

and say goodbye,

leave bird and beast

the world. At least

they’re dignified

not mummified,

know vanity

from humanity

and live in peace

not war and fleece.


Our moral compass broken lies,

to broken truths we close our eyes,

the answer’s always firearms,

and incoherent false alarms

in each and every empty head—

we’re dead.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

10 thoughts on “O little town of”

  1. A dark counterpoint to the sickly carol that inspired it. Sadly, probably a more fitting description of the world today than the original is. Well written, Jane

  2. Pingback: sleepwalker – K.

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